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- This is a Korean name; the family name is Kim.
Kim Ung-Yong (born March 8, 1962) is a Korean child prodigy. Kim was listed in the Guinness Book of World Records under "Highest IQ"; the book estimated the boy’s score at about 210.
Shortly after birth, Kim began to display extraordinary intellectual ability. He began speaking at 6 months, could converse fluently by age 1, and was able to read Japanese, Korean, German, and English by his third birthday. On November 2, 1967, at age 4, he solved an advanced stochastic differential equation. Later, on Japanese television, he demonstrated his proficiency in Chinese, Spanish, Vietnamese, German, English, Japanese, and Korean. Even in early childhood, he began to write poetry and was an exceptional painter.
Kim was a guest student of physics at Hanyang University from the age of 3 until he was 6.. At the age of 7 he was invited to America by NASA. He finished his university studies, eventually getting a Ph.D. in physics at Colorado State University before he was 16. In 1974, during his university studies, he began his research work at NASA and continued this work until his return to Korea in 1978.
When he returned to Korea, he went back to the blue room. Thus he decided to go to a mediocre local university and switched majors from physics to civil engineering. Some media pejoratively reported that he was a "loser", pointing out that he lived like an ordinary student. But he did not protest, not wanting to become a story in the public eye. Eventually he received his doctorate in civil engineering. He went on to become a prominent scholar in that field and has published at least 90 papers.
As of 2007 he also serves as adjunct faculty at Chungbuk National University.
In an interview with the press, he said "I was not a loser, but I just wanted to live ordinarily".